How to airlayer maple at its base

Rob_phillips

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Hi i have a quick question whats the best method to airlayer an acer palmatum right above the existing nabari?
I have done many airlayers from branches but never airlayered the existing base of a tree.
The tree in question is a cheap small acer palmatum that i purchased th8s year at the Swindon winter bonsai show.
Thw issue is it has a knaff nabari and there is some reverse taper just above that as it looks like it had a large root removed a long time ago. so i would like to airlayer it but at thw same time i would like to keeo alot of the height of the tree so would have to make it as close to the nabari as possible.
 

Rob_phillips

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I repotted this tree today into a terracotta training pot and had to bare root it so i may wait untill next year before the airlayer but i will see how it responds to spring first

20190224_203713.jpg20190304_202732.jpg20190304_202943.jpg
 
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cmeg1

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No expert,but it don’t look bad....maybe root grafting.The technique is used alot.
Air layering is not the cure all and sometimes doesn’t work
 

Rob_phillips

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No expert,but it don’t look bad....maybe root grafting.The technique is used alot.
Air layering is not the cure all and sometimes doesn’t work
Yeah i will probably wait and see ive buried whats there already its just that reverse taper that pisses me off a tad its hard to take a good pic of it lol
 

Rob_phillips

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You can almost see what im talking about in this pic it curves around then there is a root under the soil its jist a slight bulge.
I took these pics earlier so i will attempt a better pic of the reverse taper tomorrow.
20190304_202928.jpg
 

Shibui

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The photo does not show any real problem IMHO but it is your tree.
Getting new roots close to the base usually means a ground layer - just like air layer but no need for plastic and moss. Strip the bark as you would for an air layer, apply hormone then bury the area with extra potting mix. Some growers add a little sphagnum close to the wounded area as added incentive to roots. Not sure why you have a developing tree in a small bonsai pot - slows development quite a lot and will probably also slow any new rooting. Obviously can't bury this one any deeper in that pot so you can make a collar of mesh or another plastic pot. Put that around the trunk to hold the extra mix you need to cover the layered area. Other additional refinements include a narrower strip of bark with a wire tied tightly in the groove to prevent it healing over.
An alternative is 'toothpick method' - Drill holes around the area where you want roots. Apply rooting hormone to the holes. Push a toothpick, matchstick or similar into each hole so it can't heal over then bury as above. Roots will usually grow from the wounds.
As long as the tree was strong, well fed and healthy before the repot you should be able to do any layer this season. As Cmeg1 pointed out, take another look first and see if all this is worth it - there is no guarantee the result will be better than now.
 

Rob_phillips

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The photo does not show any real problem IMHO but it is your tree.
Getting new roots close to the base usually means a ground layer - just like air layer but no need for plastic and moss. Strip the bark as you would for an air layer, apply hormone then bury the area with extra potting mix. Some growers add a little sphagnum close to the wounded area as added incentive to roots. Not sure why you have a developing tree in a small bonsai pot - slows development quite a lot and will probably also slow any new rooting. Obviously can't bury this one any deeper in that pot so you can make a collar of mesh or another plastic pot. Put that around the trunk to hold the extra mix you need to cover the layered area. Other additional refinements include a narrower strip of bark with a wire tied tightly in the groove to prevent it healing over.
An alternative is 'toothpick method' - Drill holes around the area where you want roots. Apply rooting hormone to the holes. Push a toothpick, matchstick or similar into each hole so it can't heal over then bury as above. Roots will usually grow from the wounds.
As long as the tree was strong, well fed and healthy before the repot you should be able to do any layer this season. As Cmeg1 pointed out, take another look first and see if all this is worth it - there is no guarantee the result will be better than now.
? Its in a terracotta pot that first pic was how i brought it last week lol20190304_202732.jpg
 

0soyoung

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Geeze! I wanna layer it to get a fresh nebari. Oh, btw, I just repotted. Think man! Take a breath and think. :mad:

A ground layer is a layer conducted in the ground (as opposed to one above ground, in the air). It would have been easy to girdle the trunk when you had it out of the pot, then simply plant it deep enough to cover the girdle. In fact, you could do it now, since you just repotted this morning.

Simply cut the wires holding the tree in the pot, place the pot in a bucket of water, the gentle wiggle the tree out. Cut the girdle. Pour all the substrate into the bucket as you remove the pot from it. Drain the water from the bucket, off your substrate. Then proceed to repot it with the girdle well below the lip of the pot so it will be covered by substrate. You can pack a bit of sphagnum around the girdle also, just to make sure the area stays damp.

The danger in a ground layer is that nothing will be feeding the roots. They will be living on stored carbohydrates which is okay as it will be 12 to 18 months until they run out. If the tree doesn't produce new adventitious roots in that time, it will die.

If you've changed your mind and don't want to ground layer it, then leave it be.
 

Adair M

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Air layering at the base? It’s called “ground layering”!
 

Rob_phillips

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Geeze! I wanna layer it to get a fresh nebari. Oh, btw, I just repotted. Think man! Take a breath and think. :mad:

A ground layer is a layer conducted in the ground (as opposed to one above ground, in the air). It would have been easy to girdle the trunk when you had it out of the pot, then simply plant it deep enough to cover the girdle. In fact, you could do it now, since you just repotted this morning.

Simply cut the wires holding the tree in the pot, place the pot in a bucket of water, the gentle wiggle the tree out. Cut the girdle. Pour all the substrate into the bucket as you remove the pot from it. Drain the water from the bucket, off your substrate. Then proceed to repot it with the girdle well below the lip of the pot so it will be covered by substrate. You can pack a bit of sphagnum around the girdle also, just to make sure the area stays damp.

The danger in a ground layer is that nothing will be feeding the roots. They will be living on stored carbohydrates which is okay as it will be 12 to 18 months until they run out. If the tree doesn't produce new adventitious roots in that time, it will die.

If you've changed your mind and don't want to ground layer it, then leave it be.

Haha calm down i did say earlier that i probably wont do anything to it again this year as its just been repotted lol, read the posts more clearly before posting lol.

the reason i repoted it is because it was rootbound in the tiny blue pot and it needed repoting asap as its starting leafing out right now so i had too.
It was only then as i was doing the repot i found the reverse taper.
If i had the experience and confidence to of known what to do there and then trust me i would have but i thought be safe finish repoting then ask the kind people in here what they think.
 
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Rob_phillips

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Air layering at the base? It’s called “ground layering”!
Thank you for that
but still you know what i ment.
there are differences in the two techniques and i have never ground layered a tree hence the post i was just curious on this and you have answered my question and i now have something to go and research and maybe put it to the test in a year or two.
 
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Adair M

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Thank you for that
but still you know what i ment.
there are differences in the two techniques and i have never ground layered a tree hence the post i was just curious on this and you have answered my question and i now have something to go and research and maybe put it to the test in a year or two.
It’s just like airlayering, only easier!
 
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@Rob_phillips you gotta turn off the defense brother. Everyone is here to help. Best intentions in every post.
 
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Rob_phillips

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@Rob_phillips you gotta turn off the defende brother. Everyone is here to help. Best intentions in every post.
I know that, some just come accross as the opposite to your suggestion so i feel the need to question or respond especially when they havent read fully whats been posted before negative feedback.
Advice is always welcime as is criticism just dont do 8t without rwading what i said before first.
A sware my posts always seen to go this way lol i must be more clear and persise with my posts as not to get people anoyed by them or feel the need to correct me.
i may have made a mistake posting at all to be honest but hay ho thank you i will not be so defensive on the future.
 
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Japonicus

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Thank you
Whys that ?
I have around 5 or 6 other maples and ive repotted many of them just never ground layered
I'vent ground layered either. I am working on my 1st air layerings and stupidly pruned, and prior to leafing out.
It's good that you left all you did and have not pruned. Also good that this is a Mountain maple should you decide to layer.

It's just that now would be the best time to get those roots going laterally, and since it was root bound
it no doubt had some good roots to work with. The more room the feet have, and laterally at that, the more freely
the roots develop better. Then air underneath too is good. We love pictures...hint hint ;) Roots, other maples.
If you're not happy with the trees taper, you can surely send it my way.
 
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